2020 in Review: The Year That Taught Us A Lot

In this post, I write about 2020 in review, the year that taught us a lot. It was a tough year and hopefully 2021 will be a better one.

Written by: Soumya Nambiar

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What can I write about 2020 that has not been written already? This was what stopped me from writing anything for a while. But I knew that when I looked back in time in future, I would definitely want to go back and revisit 2020 in review through my own words.

It was such a difficult year for so many of us. As we crossed one hurdle after the other, we were thrown another one.

And just like you, I went through all the emotions. The small joys, the big disappointments, the crying in the bathroom moments, the ‘why God why?’ moments, the meltdowns, the anger at the virus, the inability of not being able to do anything to protect the ones we love, a state of denial and finally of acceptance of our circumstances. So many emotions in the stupidest year ever in my / our life.

A flatlay of travel passport amid travel objects

When it started, we all thought it was going to be such a great year. I was roaming around Mexico and discovering how beautiful and unique Mexico is. I think that is what hurt the most this year. Except for almost being continuously on the road for the first 3 months of the year, I stayed put in one place for the longest time ever. And just like that, I felt that my wings were clipped.

I refused to go back on the road when things started opening up in India. I was living with vulnerable people and for me, they mattered more than anything, even travelling. And lest we forget it is still here and we need to practice all the safety regulations for some more time.

It changed all of us in ways we haven’t envisioned till then. So many new words came out of this year. Maybe all of them were not new but many of them were practically unheard of till then. It has slowly started becoming part of our ‘new normal’.

And the year scathed us all. So many people lost their loved ones in 2020 and it was earth shattering to see grief all around us. So many of my friends lost their parents in 2020 and it was really difficult to see them go through this while we clutched onto our dear ones for life.

The year 2020 was lonely too for so many people. Many people had to go through the struggles all alone and many people died without even catching a glimpse of their loved ones. Many families were separated due to the lockdowns. And how do we explain 2020 to the kids? They had to go through a year of not meeting any of their friends. If we couldn’t stay without our friends, what would they be feeling like?

So many people lost their livelihoods. Our tourism industry took a huge hit and many people in our industry are still reeling from the effects of 2020. Inspite of having an alternate income, it affected my blog in a big way too.

It was definitely an emotionally and tiring year. With multiple visits to the hospital for relatives, it was just mentally taxing. Tharun’s shoulder, Mom in law’s health scare in April, father in law’s stroke in November and my nephew’s pacemaker replacement surgery in December. Which meant that we spent Christmas in a hospital. Thankfully all of them are fine now including Master M. He is right now going through the dinosaurs phase. We all need to know the names of all the dinosaurs and how to draw these dinosaurs as well.

It was also the year I became so aware of my privilege. The privilege of having an option to work from home while millions walked kilometers from metros to their villages. The privilege of having access to the best hospitals while many of our frontline warriors toiled hard in pathetic conditions. The privilege of running our other business from the confines of our houses while many died of hunger all around the world. The privilege of slow travel and so many other privileges.

But it was also the year that taught us a lot. And that is one of the reasons I will always be grateful to the year 2020. It taught us what mattered to us the most; our families. For the first time since our marriage, I got to spend some quality time with my in-laws. I also got to spend a few months with my family.

It also taught me that I need not be strong at all times. At the end of the year, I had a meltdown and it was so refreshing to get that out of the system. I am taking 2021 as slowly as possible. Trying to be as kind as I can be to myself.

As we shifted online, I also learnt a lot of new technologies. I developed multiple websites in 2020 and I am hoping that I will develop many more this year. We delivered multiple webinars and reached thousand of students this year. I also learnt the basics of editing videos and I am hoping to get many more videos out this year. Anyway the year 2020 has made us to be more comfortable of ourselves in front of a computer screen. We had everything from travel quizzes to work meetings to bonding time with families and friends over Zoom calls.

2020 in Review: Different types of Cookies

But the biggest surprise to me this year was how much I came to enjoy cooking. From rarely cooking before 2020 to baking so many different types of Christmas cookies, it has been a long journey.

It also taught me how so many people around the world were kind and were willing to go out of their way to help others. Yes there were idiots like the previous tenants of the white house and the idiots who refused to wear masks. But the good people definitely outranked the bad.

Yes, the year 2020 taught us a lot of lessons that we will remember for a lifetime. And hopefully mankind will not repeat the mistakes of its past this year.

And like someone said, “Hope is definitely the word for the year 2021”.

P:S: We also moved back to Bangalore in November 2020 after living out of a suitcase for exactly an year.

Read my other year in review posts:

About Soumya Nambiar

Soumya Nambiar here. I am an avid traveler, travel blogger, vegetarian foodie and entrepreneur from Bangalore, India who grew up in Tanzania, Africa. I have been to more than 60 countries and in this blog, I write about my personal experiences as an Indian traveller around the world as well as my struggles as a vegetarian. I can be reached at [email protected].

9 thoughts on “2020 in Review: The Year That Taught Us A Lot”

  1. “I’ve learned so much from reading your blog posts. Thank you for being a trusted source of information in the community.”


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